Dictée du Tour: 17,000 students live it up in yellow

March 29 th 2019 - 17:16

Key points:

  • Today, Friday 29 March, 17,000 students between the ages of 9 and 12 participated in the third edition of the Dictée du Tour, held in 40 towns, cities and departments on the route of the 2019 Tour de France.
  • Students all over France got to work on regional newspaper articles about the Tour and their towns, cities and departments.
  • The winners will get to spend a day at the Tour and will be announced on Friday 17 May, 50 days before the start of the race.

The third edition of the Dictée du Tour got rolling with the aim of introducing children to cycling champions past and present. A peloton of 17,000 students between the ages of 9 and 12 and hailing from virtually all the stage towns and cities of the next Grande Boucle tackled the steep gradients of conjugation and plunged down the winding descent of grammar. A look back on a stage that could have spelt success or disaster at every turn!

"The Dictée du Tour is becoming part of the DNA of the Tour de France little by little", chirped race director Christian Prudhomme this morning. 17,000 students got to work on excerpts from articles in the regional press about the Tour de France for the third edition of the dictation contest. The local authorities (towns, cities and departments on the route of the Tour) ensured that the dictation contest was a big success by organising a wide range of fringe events, including bicycle workshops, school cycling races and poster drawing competitions. Former riders, together with well-known politicians and athletes, read the texts to the children, including Lilian Calmejane, who recorded the text on video (Albi), Christophe Moreau (Belfort), Bernard Thévenet (Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne and Valloire), Paul Bernardoni (Nîmes), Guerlain Chicherit (Tignes), Émile Ntamack, Mathilde Gros (Toulouse), François Bayrou (Pau) and Jean-Paul Ollivier (Saint-Dié-des-Vosges).
The noise and clatter of the playgrounds gave way to complete silence as the guests started to read the various Dictées du Tour aloud. Students were also tested on their cycling vocabulary with words every cycling fan should know. Was it "brakes" or "breaks"? "Pedals" or "peddles"?

“Eddy Merckx? He’s like Zidane for Belgians,” said 11-year old Anthony, proving just how profound an impact the Cannibal made on adults and children alike. Some pupils had taken a head start on the dictation by revising the day before, meaning they arrived in tip-top condition for their aural test. When the video of the route was broadcast in Rambouillet, the eyes of the children were already on the month of July.

The eight winners from each stage town or city of the 2019 Tour de France participating in the Dictée will be announced on 17 May 2019. Just 50 days before the Grand Départ of the Tour in Brussels, our spelling whizzes will get a glimpse of the memorable experience that awaits them when the Tour comes to their region.

Participating local authorities and newspapers:
Albertville – Le Dauphiné Libéré
Albi – La Dépêche du Midi
Aude – La Dépêche du Midi
Belfort – France Bleu Belfort
Binche – La Dernière Heure
Brioude – La Montagne
Bruxelles – Sud Info
Budapest – L’Equipe
Cantal – France Bleu Pays d’Auvergne
Chalon-sur-Saône – Le Journal de Saône-et-Loire
Colmar – L’Alsace
Embrun - Le Dauphiné Libéré
Epernay – L’union de Reims
Foix - France Bleu Occitanie
Gap - Le Dauphiné Libéré
Gard / Pont du Gard – Midi Libre
Haut-Rhin – L’Alsace
Haute-Saône / La Planche-des-Belles-Filles - L’Est Républicain
Hautes-Alpes – Le Dauphiné Libéré
Limoux – La Dépêche du Midi
Mâcon – Le Journal de Saône-et-Loire
Marne - L’Union
Mulhouse – L’Alsace
Nancy – L’Est Républicain
Nice – L’Equipe
Nîmes – Midi Libre
Pau - La République des Pyrénées
Reims – L’Union
Saint-Dié-des-Vosges – Vosges Matin
Saint-Etienne – Extrait du livre de Paul Fournel « Besoin de vélo », aux éditions du Seuil
Saint-Flour – France Bleu Pays d’Auvergne
Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne – La Maurienne
Tarbes – La Dépêche du Midi
Tarn - La Dépêche du Midi
Tignes – Le Dauphiné Libéré
Toulouse – Midi Libre
Barèges / col du Tourmalet – La Dépêche du Midi
Val Thorens – Le Dauphiné Libéré
Valloire - La Maurienne
Yvelines / Rambouillet – Le Parisien

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